A referendum in the Southern Peoples' regional state pulled a 410.1 million Br budget. This will be the second referendum held in the Regional State since last year, where over one million people from six zones have voted to form the South Western Regional State. Scheduled in three months, residents in Gedeo, Wolaita, Konso, and five special weredas are set to go to the polls to decide on the creation of what could be the country's 13th regional state. A month ago, Parliament nodded the budget after a bill for over half a billion Birr was tabled by the National Electoral Board. The Board, chaired by Birtukan Midekssa, expects over 3.1 million people to vote in the plebiscite. Approximately 18,000 personnel will be deployed to administer the votes; half of them have been hired. The Board's officials have designed an online platform to receive complaints from voters about the nominated election officials.
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